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The Future is Now for Cross-Media

(April 2003) posted on Tue Apr 22, 2003

It's a force to be reckoned with says TWGA


Whether it's referred to as "cross-media," "network publishing," or "media-independent publishing," the ability to digitally prepare and produce content in multiple print and electronic formats is becoming an increasingly important skill for creative professionals and graphic-arts companies. According to a TrendWatch Graphic Arts report entitled "Cross Media: Reformatting the Future," print and creative-services providers must be prepared to publish messages via multiple media outlets, including print materials, electronic media, and/or the Internet.

"We used to think we were in the printing and graphic-arts industries, but as media outlets swell to unprecedented numbers, we must now think of ourselves as being in the business communications industry," notes Vince Naselli, director, TrendWatch Graphic Arts. "As little as 10 years ago, businesses were limited to print, TV, and radio as communicaiton outlets to the masses. With the growing application of wireless and internet technologies, communication options now include PDAs, electronic billboards, blimps, cell phones, and even gas-station pumps, which can all be effectively targeted to more defined audiences and communicate quickly updated information and promotions."

The 141-page report details the history of cross-media, examines basic approaches creative professionals are using to construct cross-media workflows, and analyzed the extent to which creative firms are currently developing content for new media. Statistics in the report come from TWGA's proprietary historical databases generated from continuing surveys of design and production firms, publishers, and Internet design and production firms.

For example, according to the report:



Graphic designers seeing an opportunity in "email campaign design, development" nearly doubled in the last six months, having gone from 9% to 17%.



40% of respondents (60% of ad agencies) view cross-media communications campaigns as a sales opportunity.



More than half (53%) of all design and production firms and 61% of publishers included in the TWGA databases currently work on cross-media projects.



Among catalog publishers surveyed, 46% view "cross-media communications campaigns" as a sales opportunity.



Within web-design and development firms, only 6% of web-design and development firms consider "getting more print-media work" as a sales opportunity, whereas 15% regard streaming video as a sales opportunity.



Among printing companies, only 2% view "adding cross-media services" as a sales opportunity.

The report sells for $1595 and can be downloaded from the TrendWatch Graphic Arts e-store. (TrendWatch Graphic Arts: 866-873-6310; www.trendwatchgraphicarts.com)


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